Many moons ago, when I was a child, our toys and playtime activities were quite different than the children growing up today. I spent most of my time outdoors, playing in the sandbox or riding my bike up and down the sidewalks. There were days when I only came inside for lunch and dinner; my parents wouldn’t see me until after the sun had set. Nowadays, activities for children just aren’t quite the same. We’ve all heard that childhood obesity is on the rise and has become a problem. Children aren’t as active today as they once were.
Instead of playing a neighborhood game of kickball or jumping rope outside, children are finding more activities to keep themselves from being physically active. The internet and fancy game consoles have caught their attention. It isn’t uncommon for children to come home from school and spend several hours in front of a computer or a Playstation. Sure, parents know where their children are and they’re being quiet; but, they aren’t getting the physical exercise that they should be getting. Activities for children have catered more towards teaching them that it is more fun to remain docile than be active.
My daughter is obsessed with her Webkinz stuffed toys. She likes to spend time online playing with them. My husband and I don’t mind, but we set a timer for her. She is only allotted a specific amount of time each day that she’s allowed to be sedentary in front of the computer. We want her to spend some time interacting with the rest of the family and being active. We are very much a fan of outdoor activities for children and encourage it as much as possible. Of course, parents look at a lot of the negative happenings that are taking place in the present day. Kids are disappearing out of their yards and on their way home from school. It isn’t as comfortable to let your children engage in outside activities for children because of the safety aspects.
If you are able to encourage outside activities for children, perhaps you can spend some time outdoors yourself. It certainly isn’t a bad thing to spend some time in your backyard minding your own business but also ensuring that your children are safe. When my daughter is outside, I focus my attention on weeding my flowerbeds or planting flowers. Sometimes, I’ll lay on a blanket with a book. As long as I can keep her within my sights, I know she’s safe and getting some great exercise.
Even though times have changed, always try to encourage activities for children that will get them motivated and moving. Allowing them to stare at a game for several hours isn’t going to make them more healthy and active. Find activities for children that are creative, fun and allows them to release some energy.